Can A Ford F-250 Go Through A Car Wash?

The Ford F-250 is a big truck, well, it’s bigger than an average truck anyway. If it’s lifted, it feels even bigger and going through a carwash can seem to be impossible but in this article we will look at specifics and determine if it is so.

A standard height Ford F-250 can easily go through an average car wash. If your truck has a 3″ lift, you can still fit just fine into a carwash. If you truck has a 6″ lift, then you need to be careful as it might be too tall for an average carwash. Also if your tires are wide or wheels have wheel spacers, that also can be a problem to fit into the tire guides.

For those trucks that don’t fir into the automatic carwashes there is still an option to go to manual hand carwash or through a self wash carwash. Both these alternative options give you options to still get your truck washed so it stays sparkly clean.

Size And Dimensions Of The Ford F-250 Truck

The dimensions of the Ford F-250 have been close to same over the entire life of this truck, but it has grown a little since the 80’s. This truck has become about 10″ wider and 10″ higher in the 2020’s than it’s old 1980’s models.

Take a look at the table of each F-250 year model and its dimensions below.

Ford F-250 Year Model Dimensions


Types Of Car Washes

There are several types of car washes out there that you could take your Ford F-250 to. Some will be smaller than others and have different things that may prevent you from taking your truck through them.

Lets take a look at them and see if your truck will fit in them.

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Can A Ford F-250 Go Through An Automatic Car Wash?

An Automatic carwash is a station where you drive your car or truck into and then activate the car wash. It then goes through various stages of washing the truck, from pre-soaking to soaping up and running the brushes over it, then rinsing it off and drying by blowing air at it.

These types of car washes can accommodate vehicles up to 84″ in width and 96″ in height. Looking at the numbers, a standard Ford F-250 can go through an Automatic car wash.

Can A Ford F-250 Go Through A Drive-through Car Wash?

Drive-through car washes are the automatic ones but have separate stations within the system. You drive your vehicle from one station to the next and the car wash does each operation as you drive through it.

These types of car washes have a height clearance of 90″ and width of about 110″ so the Ford F-250 will fit into a Drive-Through Car Wash just as well.

Can A Ford F-250 Go Through A Tunnel Car Wash?

A tunnel car wash is the same as the Drive Through one but in this one there is a conveyor system that pulls the vehicle through it at a constant speed that is designed for the system. These tunnel car washes have the same maximum dimensions of about 90″ of maximum height and about 110″ of maximum width.

A typical Ford F-250 will be able to fit into a tunnel car wash without a problem.

Can A Ford F-250 Go Through A Self-Service Car Wash?

A self-service car wash is basically a bay into which you can drive in and then activate the various components from a control panel. Things like the pressure washer stray, to soaping brush and etc. In this one, you do all the work. The car wash just provides the bay and the equipment for you to use.

Self Service car washes are usually about 14′ high and about 15′ wide. They usually can easily accommodate most vehicles, including big box trucks and in some cases even a semi truck.

You can easily fit your Ford F-250 into a self-service car wash.

Can A Ford F-250 Go Through A Hand-Wash Car Wash?

Hand wash the Truck

A hand car wash is usually out in an open area like a parking lot. This type of car wash is done by hand by the employees of the car wash. You will drive your truck onto the property and order a wash. They will then drive your truck into the designated area and hand-wash the truck. Once done they will drive it out to an area where you will pick up the truck from.

Hand wash car washes don’t usually have a limit on height and width of the vehicle unless they use one of the above systems to run your truck through first. In which case they would just skip that step if your truck doesn’t fit.

You can safely take your Ford F-250 through a Hand wash car wash.

Check Before Driving Your Ford F-250 Into A Car Wash

So we know that a standard Ford F-250 will fit into a standard car wash, but we don’t know if the car wash is standard or not, and do you really know if you have a “standard” Ford F-250? Lets look at the different things that can affect this.

The Height Of Your Ford F-250

The standard height of your Ford F-250 should not exceed about 82″. If the truck has a suspension lift, this will make the truck sit higher than the standard 82″. If the truck has aftermarket wheels and tires, it will also alter the height. These things will require some calculations.

A 3″ lift will make the truck height be 85″ and a 6″ lift will increase the truck height to 88″.

But it is rare that a truck with a lift is still wearing the original wheels and tires. They also alter the height.

This is why it is important that you measure the truck’s height so you always know how high it is when you go through any kind of height restricted area and know that your truck is well within the allowed height.

The Width Of Your Ford F-250

The width of the Ford F-250 is about 80″. This will change if the truck has things like wide fender flares, any other equipment like a plow attached. Also dually rear wheels will make the truck stand wider than standard.

A Ford F-250 with dually wheels is about 105″ wide which is much wider than a standard automatic or a tunnel car wash’s maximum width, so this truck should not be taken to those and instead opt for a self-wash car wash or a hand-wash car wash where width and height is commonly not an issue.

The Length Of Your Ford F-250

The length of the truck is not a critical factor when it comes to car washes, unless you are towing something behind the truck or have something sticking out of the back.

Lengthwise, the car washes can accept anything but also it depends on the maneuverability around the facility. The entrance and exit of the car wash can sometime be limited and with sharp turns, so you need to make sure your length will not prevent from making those sharp turns to enter or exit the car wash.

The Accessories On Your Ford F-250

Making your truck look unique and awesome is a common practice of adding accessories, like running boards, or towing mirrors. Some of those accessories can be an issue when you go to a car wash. This is why it is important to be aware of your width and height at all times.

It is good to measure the height of your truck, including anything that sticks out of the body of the truck so you know the overall total width and height.

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Tips For Washing A Ford F-250

Going to a car wash should include a prepping time before you go and dive into one. You want to make sure nothing gets broken or damaged and you don’t get any water inside the truck. This is why just a moment to prepare before entering should be on your list.

  1. Preparing The Truck
    1. Remove and secure accessories
    2. Retract antennas
    3. Fold in the towing mirrors if you have them
  2. Choose The Right Car Wash
    1. Find a suitable automatic car wash that your truck fits in
    2. Opt for a self-service or hand wash if it is too wide
    3. Choose one that has vacuums you can use to clean the inside of the truck as well
  3. Regular Maintenance And Care
    1. Make sure to wipe off any residual water drops on the truck to prevent water spots
    2. Wax and polish the truck to preserve the finish and give it a long shining life

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